Preparing for your appointment

You're likely to see your family doctor first if you're experiencing an itchy rash that may be related to nickel allergy. Preparing for your appointment can help you make the most of your time with your doctor.

What you can do

  • Write down a description of your symptoms, when they first appeared and whether they occur in a pattern.
  • Make a list of any medications you take, including vitamins and dietary supplements.
  • Prepare a list of questions.

Questions that you might want to ask your doctor include:

  • What's the most likely cause of my rash?
  • What else might cause it?
  • Is there a test that can confirm a nickel allergy? Do I need to prepare for this test?
  • What are the treatments available for nickel allergy, and which do you recommend?
  • What side effects can I expect from these treatments?
  • Can I use over-the-counter medications to treat the condition?

What to expect from your doctor

Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions:

  • When did your symptoms begin?
  • Have your symptoms changed over time?
  • What at-home treatments have you used?
  • What effect did those treatments have?
  • What, if anything, appears to worsen your symptoms?
Nov. 18, 2016
References
  1. Goldenberg A, et al. Nickel allergy in adults in the US: 1962 to 2015. Dermatitis. 2015;26:216.
  2. Nickel allergy. American Osteopathic College of Dermatology. http://www.aocd.org/?page=NickelAllergy. Accessed Oct. 23, 2016.
  3. Adkinson NF, et al. Contact dermatitis. In: Middleton's Allergy: Principles and Practice. 8th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2014. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Oct. 20, 2016.
  4. Allergic skin conditions. American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. http://www.aaaai.org/conditions-and-treatments/library/at-a-glance/allergic-skin-conditions. Accessed Oct. 25, 2016.
  5. Contact dermatitis. American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. http://acaai.org/allergies/types/skin-allergies/contact-dermatitis. Oct. 23, 2016.
  6. Nickel allergy: How to avoid exposure and reduce symptoms. American Academy of Dermatology. https://www.aad.org/public/diseases/rashes/nickel-allergy. Accessed Oct. 23, 2016.
  7. Maridet C, et al. The electronic cigarette: The new source of nickel contact allergy of the 21st century? Contact Dermatitis. 2015;73:49.
  8. Tuchman M, et al. Nickel contact dermatitis in children. Clinics in Dermatology. 2015;33:320.
  9. Lusi EA, et al. High prevalence of nickel allergy in an overweight female population: A pilot observational analysis. PLOS One. 2015;3:1.
  10. Fonacier L, et al. Contact dermatitis: A practice parameter update — 2015. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice. 2015;3:S1.
  11. Brod BA, et al. Management of allergic contact dermatitis. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Oct. 23, 2016.
  12. Prednisone. Micromedex 2.0 Healthcare Series. http://www.micromedexsolutions.com. Accessed Oct. 25, 2016.
  13. Getting piercing done safely. American Academy of Dermatology. https://www.aad.org/public/kids/skin/piercings-tattoos/getting-piercing-done-safely. Accessed Oct. 25, 2016.